BPCE L'Observatoire

The outlook for savings and financial investments as at March 2024

[May 2024] The March economic outlook report for household savings provides an overview of Q1-2024 and full-year 2023 for securities and the PER retirement savings plan.

In the first quarter of 2024: life insurance, the principal factor driving new fund inflows

Total inflows, excluding securities and cash, in the first quarter of the year came to €6.4bn, down by €10bn and €24.28bn respectively on the aggregate totals for March 2022 and March 2021. New money invested in banking products totaled €3.2bn thanks to regulated passbook savings accounts and term accounts, the products driving these new fund inflows despite lower, seasonally adjusted monthly surpluses in the first quarter. Life insurance was the big winner in this first 3-month period. Inflows (corrected to account for seasonal variations) have exceeded €1.5bn per month since January, even rising to €2.7bn in March, while higher interest rates have pushed inflows on euro-denominated products into positive territory for the first time in almost 2 years.

Flows of household investment in securities close to pre-pandemic levels

In 2023, flows of household financial securities stood at -€0.9bn, a figure close to 2018 values but far from the performances recorded over the last three years. This lower flow figure can be explained by the lackluster performance of equities and non-money market mutual funds. On a year-to-date basis, however, the decline remains largely contained thanks to positive annual flows into bonds (+€5.3bn) and money-market UCIs (+€6.7bn). In the last quarter of 2023, equities and non-money market mutual funds recorded negative flows of -€12.9bn and -€2.4bn respectively. Flows into bonds and money-market mutual funds (€1.4bn and €2.2bn respectively), although positive and higher than in previous years, were unable to entirely offset the negative flows, bringing total security flows for the quarter to -€11.8bn.

PER retirement savings plans exceed the €100bn mark in outstandings and a total of 10 million investors

The year 2023 ended on a high note for the RER retirement savings plans. With €102.8bn in outstandings, the PER has attracted more than 10 million French savers. 37% of the people opting for this type of savings plan have taken out an individual PER, 33% have chosen a mandatory PER, and 30% have preferred a collective PER, revealing a slight preference for the individual solution. In the space of a year, the number of holders of this type of plan has risen by more than 3 million. Of these, 1.98 million opted for a mandatory PER. Outstandings on retirement savings plans continue to grow albeit at a slower rate each quarter.

For further details

For further details

Conjoncture Epargne – Mai 2024 (In French only)


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